Soul City Series 5

The fifth series of Soul City, the multi-award-winning television series, was back on air on Tuesday, 22 May 2001, at 20h30, on SABC1.

series5.jpgFans of the popular drama series had much to look forward to in the form of new stars, new directors, a new format, and new storylines. Sonia Mbele (Phamokate and Brothers), Hakeem Kae Kazim (Mainly for Men), Patrick Ndlovu (Yizo Yizo) and Brendan Pollecut were the new faces to watch out for. Nimrod Nkosi, of Jam Alley and Road2Riches fame, made a guest appearance on the series. However, fans didn't need to fear that they won't recognise the staff of Masakhane Clinic come May - Sis Bettina (Lillian Dube), Sol (David Dennis), Karen (Grethe Fox), Nomfundo (Sindi Dlathu), Dinana (Kekeletso Mputhi), Ali (Aubrey Moalusi) and the rest of the regular line-up were back to reprise their roles.

Dumisani Phakathi, Clare Stopford, Martine de la Harpe and Ntshavheni wa Luruli are the dynamic group of directors who are controlling the action on the forthcoming series. Soul City V boasted a new wide-screen format which made the subtitling much easier to read. This was intended to increase the Soul City audience, which was already an impressive 2.5 million viewers per episode. The series started off as a half-hour edutainment series six years ago, but quickly acquired a huge following, and evolved into a hour-long format, which allowed for more complex storylines and greater resolution.

Central issues feeding the storylines on Soul City V included: Care and support of people living with HIV/AIDS, Rape, Disability and Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMME's).

Soul City V was produced by Clinic Television, who are already hard at work on Soul City VI, the next series of this highly successful series. So fans of Sis Bettina, Karen Baba-D and the rest of Masakhane Clinic won't have to wait long for their next dose of high quality edutainment from the gang at Masakhane Clinic!

The fifth series of Soul City, broadcast in 2001 on SABC 1 television and 9 South African SABC radio stations, in 9 languages, was a huge success. Its accompanying booklets were serialised and distributed through the Sowetan, Die Burger, Ilanga and Sunday Times newspapers across South Africa.

The fifth series dealt with HIV/AIDS (with a focus on Living Positively), Small Business Development, Rape, Disability.

The fifth Soul City series is made up of: 

  • A prime time television series – 13 one hour episodes (Series 1-3 were half hours)
  • A daily radio drama – 45 fifteen minute episodes
  • Booklets – 3 full colour booklets per series
  • A advertising/publicity campaign which keeps people talking and thinking about Soul City

The fifth series was funded by the EU, DFID, Japan Official Development Assisitance, Kagiso Trust, Ireland Aid and the Dept of Health. Commercial sponsors were BP and MTN.

Evaluation is an essential part of the Soul City IHDC strategy. It helps determine impact and is important for accountability to the public as well as to funders. Lessons learned are fed back into the development of the IHDC’s future projects. All Soul City projects are independently evaluated.

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